The Finale

Over the past two weeks, I have learned more about coffee and Costa Rica than I thought was possible. The impact that the coffee industry has had on the Tico culture is amazing because the industry has shaped the way Costa Rica is today. Even though coffee is no longer the main industry for the…

Leaving the Pure Life…for now

Over the past two weeks I have become an expert on the coffee industry in Costa Rica, and the environmental, social, and economically sustainable practices they use to efficiently run each company. Before we arrived in Costa Rica, I was somewhat aware of the commitment Costa Rica has to the environment. However, I did not…

Managing my Feelings about the Trip being Over

The first step in the supply chain is the supplier’s supplier, and in the case of coffee, coffee farms. An example of this is Doka Estates. At this plantation, the coffee beans are grown, sorted, pealed, dried, and stored. At this company, management must make decisions concerning both their employees and the pickers, who are…

Departing Costa Rica :(((

As I prepare to leave Costa Rica and end my first study abroad experience, I look back to reflect on what I have learned, specifically about the specifics of coffee production.  As you might imagine, as someone who came to this trip not knowing the difference between a dark and medium roast, I have learned…

A Bean’s Movement

We visited several different coffee farms during our trip to Costa Rica. Different coffee plantations use several techniques to ensure high quality of the bean and maximum yield. For example, some companies will allow two trees to grow side by side to save space. I learned that coffee plants are first planted in a pot…

How Coffee is Made: From A to B(ean)

Coffee is one of my favorite drinks, but I’ve never put much thought into how it gets into my cup or favorite Starbucks drink every morning. This trip has completely opened my eyes to the wonderful world of coffee production and I don’t think I’ve ever learned more about a type of beverage in my…

One Last Time

I’m not crying, you’re crying. In all seriousness, my 2 weeks here in Costa Rica have been nothing short of amazing. Aside from learning something new about the Tico culture every day, I was able to study the management side of the coffee supply chain. My group and I focused on aspects like hierarchy, employment,…

¡Adiós, Costa Rica!

     Over these past two weeks we have learned about every step, process, and aspect in coffee growing, milling, roasting, selling, and buying. Costa Rican culture, industry, and environment all play an enormous role in the coffee industry. In my case, I focused heavily upon how each aspect of the coffee industry in Costa…

How It’s Made: Coffee Edition

During my two weeks here in Costa Rica, I have learned a great deal about the supply chain of coffee, particularly in the perspective of how coffee is made. As the coffee bean moves from the coffee plant to your cup, it goes through coffee farms, mills, roasters, stores, and finally you. It all starts…

Farewell, Pura Vida

The past two week have taught me more than I could imagine about the coffee industry. I never would have guessed how many stages were included in coffee production and how they all came together, especially from a selling standpoint. The first step to analyze in the coffee making process is coffee farms. Coffee farms…

Sourcing Coffee

Coffee farms probably have the most sourcing related issues relative to any other member of the coffee supply chain.  The farm owner/operator is responsible for sourcing the coffee plants, the labor to harvest the coffee cherries, the packaging to store them during transport (if any) and the means to transport them.  In my experience here…

What We’ve Learned About the Costa Rican Coffee Supply Chain

Throughout our two weeks in Costa Rica I have learned a plethora of information regarding the coffee supply chain. But while on most of our trips I paid special attention the management of each of the parts of the supply chain since management was my groups focus. While at coffee farms, the first step in…

Costa Rica: It’s Bean Good

I will never look at a cup of coffee the same way after these last two weeks. I think that I have gained a deeper understanding of the hard work and expertise that goes into each individual cup. Something that really surprised me was how sustainable the coffee farming process is. It is a zero…

That’s a Wrap!

Throughout the short time span of two weeks, it is incredible how much information I have gained pertaining to the coffee industry and sustainability. Prior to arriving, I realized that Costa Rica had a strong focus on preservation of the environment, but after visiting and speaking with companies I have come to realize the incredible…

Times are Changing

After seeing Monteverde, it is clear that tourism has had the biggest impact on this area. If I wasn’t convinced myself, then I was convinced when I learned that my host mom had never been there before. When asked why, she told me that it was too touristy and mainly that it was too expensive…

Adios Costa Rica

Coffee Farms The job of a coffee farm is to plant the coffee bean and wait until it sprouts into a cherry. Doka is the best example of a coffee farm that we visited. Their selling can differ compared to others slightly. Since Doka farms the beans some are higher quality which would cause them…

Dota: Cooperative Magic

Today we visited the Café Privilegios. Café Privilegios is made up of 900 different coffee producers. This means that they receive their coffee beans from 900 individual growers. A large portion of these numbers come from families who decided to invest in the coffee industry. An advantage to this cooperative style is that Café Privilegios…

A Day at Dota

  Today I had the opportunity to visit Coopedota, or Dota, which is a different type of coffee company.  Dota functions as a cooperative, meaning that it is made up of several small, individual coffee plantations-900 in Dota’s case. Having a cooperative system means a whole new system for growing, buying, and selling the product…

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work: Exploring Santa Maria de Dota

Today we visited Santa Maria de Dota, a cooperative community of coffee farms working together to become successful in the coffee industry.  Out of the 900 coffee producers which make up Dota, almost all of them are small coffee farms owns and operated by a family.  This holds several advantages for those small farms which…

The Coopedota Cooperative and its Impact on the Community

Compared to a traditional company cooperatives can offer many advantages as well disadvantages to those involved. Cooperatives allow small coffee farms to pool their resources and information together to increase their power in the coffee market. An advantage a cooperative has over a traditional company is that small coffee farms have more stability since they…